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Old 12-22-2008, 10:34 AM   #1
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My First (ceramic) Tile Floor, all down, without grout


HI

I got the tiles all set in the porch. First ceramic tile job I have done. I am happy with how it looks with only a couple issues, hopefully I will figure out what happened here, so I won't make the same mistakes when we tile the Kitchen.

1. Some of the tiles are not perfectly flat / level to the other tiles. Close, but I can tell they are not perfect. I suspect this is mainly due to our technique. * details below on how we set the tiles.

2. Ended up with 2 tiles that got small chips in them. Some thinset dried on them and when we removed it, the tiles chiped slightly. I suspect I would have avoided this entirely if we had clean up more promptly, we waited because we didn't want to mess up the positioning of the tiles.

Thanks for your suggestions and feedback. Here are some photos of the job:

My First (ceramic) Tile Floor, all down, without grout-img_4771.jpg

My First (ceramic) Tile Floor, all down, without grout-img_4773.jpg

My First (ceramic) Tile Floor, all down, without grout-img_4782.jpg

My First (ceramic) Tile Floor, all down, without grout-img_4779.jpg

My First (ceramic) Tile Floor, all down, without grout-img_4775.jpg

Details on how we installed: The sub floor (slab) was very clean, very flat / level. I used a 1/4" X 1/4" trowel and was very careful to have the thinset very consistent. My fiancee applied a thin coat of thinset to the back of each tile per the thinset directions on the bag. I suspect some of the thinset she applied might not have been perfectly evenly applied - thats my only guess as to why they are not all perfectly flat.

Thanks!
Jamie

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Old 12-24-2008, 05:31 PM   #2
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My First (ceramic) Tile Floor, all down, without grout


Quote:
I suspect some of the thinset she applied might not have been perfectly evenly applied...
This is why you use a notched trowel - to evenly distribute the thinset. Thinset mixed to thick can also result in the condition you have known as "lippage". If a substrate is not perfectly plane this can also cause lippage but generally with larger tiles.

The chips are unfortunate and you can easily replace those tiles if you care to, do it before you grout anything.

Next time if you will keep a bucket of water and a sponge at your side you can clean as you go. If you move a tile - fix it then and there.

Also if you will apply the thinset to the substrate it makes the job much easier and you don't have to backbutter every tile, that's extra work and unnecessary with tiles that size.

All in all your job looks real good, nothing to regret there.

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Old 12-24-2008, 08:15 PM   #3
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My First (ceramic) Tile Floor, all down, without grout


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Originally Posted by Bud Cline View Post
This is why you use a notched trowel - to evenly distribute the thinset. Thinset mixed to thick can also result in the condition you have known as "lippage". If a substrate is not perfectly plane this can also cause lippage but generally with larger tiles.

The chips are unfortunate and you can easily replace those tiles if you care to, do it before you grout anything.

Next time if you will keep a bucket of water and a sponge at your side you can clean as you go. If you move a tile - fix it then and there.

Also if you will apply the thinset to the substrate it makes the job much easier and you don't have to backbutter every tile, that's extra work and unnecessary with tiles that size.

All in all your job looks real good, nothing to regret there.
HI;

I ended grouting this afternoon, and just got cleaned up and back on the computer. I will upload pictures later, I have to run to dinner here in just a moment.

I did use a 1/4" X 1/4" knotch trowel on the slab to spread the thinset. However the thinset said that for tiles 8" X8" and larger (I used 12X12) that you needed to apply a layer of thin set to the back of each tile before it was set down.

Did I do that wrong?

Thanks for your comments.

Jamie
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Old 12-24-2008, 10:20 PM   #4
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My First (ceramic) Tile Floor, all down, without grout


Did you check for level as you progressed?
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Old 12-24-2008, 11:38 PM   #5
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My First (ceramic) Tile Floor, all down, without grout


Quote:
Originally Posted by jamiedolan View Post
I did use a 1/4" X 1/4" knotch trowel on the slab to spread the thinset. However the thinset said that for tiles 8" X8" and larger (I used 12X12) that you needed to apply a layer of thin set to the back of each tile before it was set down.

Did I do that wrong?
You didn't do anything wrong. Bud just mentioned it being unnecessary. For a 12x"12" ceramic, I like to use a 1/4"x1/4"x3/8" notched trowel.
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Old 12-25-2008, 01:13 AM   #6
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My First (ceramic) Tile Floor, all down, without grout


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Did you check for level as you progressed?
No I did not. Do you mean checking to see that the tiles were level to each other? The slab was crack free, and appeared to be perfectly level, no variation on a 4' level.

I could see some tiles were not level with the other tiles, and I messed around with them some, I tried taping out down with a piece of wood on top, but I shattered the tile.

I lost way more tiles when I planed due to how many cracked when cutting, I am sure a better cutter would have helped, I can see now that I used it that the one I bought isn't that great.

Since I am down to 5 spare tiles, I didn't want to keep messing around with them and decided I would just have to live with a few minor variations in height. But I would like to avoid this when I do the kitchen floor. I will skip putting the thinset on the back of the tiles if that will help and wont harm anything.

Thanks & Merry Christmas

Jamie
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Old 12-25-2008, 01:34 AM   #7
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My First (ceramic) Tile Floor, all down, without grout


The tiles are so close to being lined up that I don't think the black ended up being bad at all. I showed these photos to several people at dinner tonight and they were all impressed with how well it turned out.

This was a portland based grout I mixed up. I have a sealer for the grout I want to use. I am confused as to how long I need to wait before applying. The ground speaks of 21 days that you should protect from freezing and should not flood or use cleaning solutions on it for. Do I want to wait the 21 days before I seal the grout?

Thanks again for the help. Despite the minor problems, I think it turned out well. You can even see one of the tiles that has a little ding in the side, its pretty small, and will likely be under a mat most of the time anyway. I only have 5 tiles left, so decided to just hang on to them and if I decide later that I can't live with the ding, then I replace it then.

Thanks again, and Merry Christmas!

Jamie --- Photos Below:

My First (ceramic) Tile Floor, all down, without grout-img_4801.jpg

My First (ceramic) Tile Floor, all down, without grout-img_4803.jpg

My First (ceramic) Tile Floor, all down, without grout-img_4792.jpg

My First (ceramic) Tile Floor, all down, without grout-img_4798.jpg
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Old 12-27-2008, 05:36 PM   #8
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My First (ceramic) Tile Floor, all down, without grout


Nice job.

I sealed my kitchen and hallway about three days after I grouted. No issues with any of the grout or discoloration and it has been about six months now with fairly heavy traffic.


'actually was helping a friend tile his kitchen and dining room today.
Vitromex Sonoma 16" tile.. Home Depot special right now, i think.
260 square foot laid on a diagonal. Looks quite nice. Went quick, I laid out some chalk lines last night and set a row across the room last night, then today we busted it out in about three hours with both of us and my Dad helping.
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Old 12-27-2008, 11:08 PM   #9
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My First (ceramic) Tile Floor, all down, without grout


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Nice job.

I sealed my kitchen and hallway about three days after I grouted. No issues with any of the grout or discoloration and it has been about six months now with fairly heavy traffic.


'actually was helping a friend tile his kitchen and dining room today.
Vitromex Sonoma 16" tile.. Home Depot special right now, i think.
260 square foot laid on a diagonal. Looks quite nice. Went quick, I laid out some chalk lines last night and set a row across the room last night, then today we busted it out in about three hours with both of us and my Dad helping.
Thanks. I am going to double check the directions on the bottle of sealer I have and make sure it is ok to use now. Thanks for letting me know it worked out well for you. I don't want to leave my grout open. It is so wet / snowy / rainy out now that the floor keeps getting water on it.

Thanks
Jamie
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Old 12-28-2008, 12:36 PM   #10
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My First (ceramic) Tile Floor, all down, without grout


Looks like a pretty good job. Although I like to install tile AFTER drywall is up. Sometimes, joint compound dust, after sanding, is a pain to get off of sanded grout.
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Old 12-28-2008, 11:02 PM   #11
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My First (ceramic) Tile Floor, all down, without grout


Why is the floor getting wet? Is it just from foot traffic?

Did I notice grout around the perimeter, between the tiles and the 2x4's?

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Old 12-28-2008, 11:05 PM   #12
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My First (ceramic) Tile Floor, all down, without grout


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Why is the floor getting wet? Is it just from foot traffic?

Did I notice grout around the perimeter, between the tiles and the 2x4's?

Jaz
Just from foot traffic, 4 dogs go in and out via this room.

Yes, There is a bit of grout that made it over the edge between the tile and the 2x4's, is this bad? I didn't bother to clean it out because I didn't think it mattered if it was there.

Thank You.
Jamie
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Old 12-29-2008, 03:57 PM   #13
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My First (ceramic) Tile Floor, all down, without grout


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Just from foot traffic, 4 dogs go in and out via this room.

Yes, There is a bit of grout that made it over the edge between the tile and the 2x4's, is this bad? I didn't bother to clean it out because I didn't think it mattered if it was there.

Thank You.
Jamie

thats why they make trim!
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Old 12-29-2008, 10:22 PM   #14
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My First (ceramic) Tile Floor, all down, without grout


If there's some grout here and there, that's fine. You just don't want solid grout, that's an expansion joint and should be left open or you can fill with caulk.

Jaz
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Old 03-19-2009, 09:30 PM   #15
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My First (ceramic) Tile Floor, all down, without grout


This is why you use a notched trowel - to evenly distribute the thinset. Thinset mixed to thick can also result in the condition you have known as "lippage". If a substrate is not perfectly plane this can also cause lippage but generally with larger tiles.


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